Stanford freshman Bessie Noll took an unusual path to Division I softball. After years of playing little league baseball in Japan, she came to America seeking greater opportunity and the camaraderie that sprouts from playing with 18 other women.
Freshman Taya Reimer, who will step into the starting lineup for injured Natalie Achonwa, doesn't need to win the game for Notre Dame. But it's going to be difficult for the Irish to advance past Maryland without her.
Tuesday's regional final came down to a spectacular showdown between Alyssa Thomas and Shoni Schimmel. Maryland emerged the winner, preventing Thomas from joining a long list of great players who never reached a Final Four.